What Your School Doesn’t Teach You?

Posted on Jul 12 2013 - 10:16pm by Chris Pentago

The Significance Of After-school Education In Modern, Technologically Driven Society

Project Management

Project management refers to the process of using knowledge, skills, techniques and tools to plan, organize, staff, direct, and control the production of a given system.

A proper project management approach is a comprehensive description of an organized and logical method, and PRINCE2 is one of the best examples of a properly structured project management approach that may be tailored for any type of project.

What is PRINCE2?

PRINCE, which is the short form of Projects IN Controlled Environments, was instituted in the year 1989 by the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA), which is now known as the Office of Government Commerce (OGC). PRINCE was later changed to PRINCE2 after some modifications by project management specialists drawn from more than 140 public and private organizations.

The results of this review were released in 1996. PRINCE2 is considered as a standard approach for best practices in order to meet business needs. It is commonly used in both private and public sectors.

In fact, it is used as the project management standard in the United Kingdom and globally. Today, PRINCE2 has grown very popular as one of the most useful certifications. http://www.doh.gov.uk

The PRINCE2 course focuses on explaining all the processes of every activity required to complete a project. The training emphasizes on business justification and shows how flexibility can be applied to various projects.

It provides the project management team with a proper organizational structure and demonstrates that a properly structured management plan should have an organized and controlled beginning and end.

How does it work?

PRINCE2 course play an integral role in the career development of several professionals. Effective implementation of PRINCE2 requires you to be well versed on its use. PRINCE2 consists of some core elements that guide you throughout the entire project; the 7 principles, 7 processes, 7 themes, and 2 techniques. Once you master these elements, then you will find it easy to manage projects with PRINCE2. (http://www.ogc.gov.uk/)

The 7 Principles

These are the foundation of PRINCE2, and refer to things that you have to do in order to show that your project is run by PRINCE2.

They include:

  • Business justification
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Learning lessons
  • Managing by exception
  • Managing by stages
  • Tailored
  • Product focused

The 7 Themes

These are the approaches that project managers use to deliver the principles when managing a given project.

The approaches include:

  • Business Case
  • Plans
  • Organization
  • Risk Management
  • Change Control
  • Quality
  • Progress

7 Processes

PRINCE2 is based on processes as it offers processes for all levels of the project management team. It also indicates the point at which certain processes should be carried out in the project life-cycle. Every process is divided into many activities.

  • Starting Up a Project: This is often used by Project Managers to prepare for a project; though the executive is also involved. Its main aim is to give you an idea.
  • Directing a Project: This commences when the first process ends. In this stage, the Project Board (which is the key decision organ in the project) decides whether to begin the project or not. The Project Board then uses this process in providing direction and control throughout the project.
  • Initiating a Project: The Project Manager uses this process in the initial management stages to effectively plan the project. The output of this process is the PID (Project Initiation Documentation.
  • Managing Stage Boundaries: PRINCE2 basically revolves around managing a project in stages. When every stage ends, the Project Board would decide whether to stop or continue with the project. In order to make this decision, the team is given certain relevant information; report of the End Stage and plan for the Next Stage. The information is often prepared by the Project Manager.
  • Controlling a Stage: The Project Manager utilizes this process to manage and control the project on a daily basis after getting authorization from the Project Board. It involves managing project delivery by authorizing remuneration for the management team, monitoring and reporting progress and handling issues and risks promptly.
  • Managing Product Delivery: The Team Managers use this process to deliver project outputs and report progress to the Project Manager.
  • Closing a Project: A good project should consist of a controlled beginning, middle and end. The Project Manager carries out this process to ensure there is a controlled end. The process helps the Manager to ensure every work is completed, evaluate the project as well as document lessons that may be used in future projects.

The 2 Techniques

PRINCE2 doesn’t provide many different techniques. There are only two techniques in PRINCE2.

  • Quality Review Technique
  • Product Based Planning

What are the PRINCE2 training options?

There are two PRINCE2 training options; the PRINCE2 Foundation course and PRINCE2 Practitioner course.

The PRINCE2 Foundation course

This focuses on providing candidates with a detailed introduction to PRINCE2 in preparation for the Foundation Certificate examination. The best part about the PRINCE2 Foundation course is that it sharpens your project management skills, boosts your resume and enhances your career prospects, according to army.mod.uk.

The PRINCE2 course objectives include:

  • Recognizing the factors that enhance the successful delivery of projects on time, according to expectations and within the budget.
  • Describing the PRINCE2 processes, techniques and components
  • Recognizing and using the PRINCE2 terminology.
  • Preparing for and taking the PRINCE2 Foundation examination.

The PRINCE2 Practitioner course

This helps you to become a certified PRINCE2 Practitioner. This course covers the techniques, processes and components, included in PRINCE2 as a Project Management Method.

The Practitioner course would make you more confident in managing projects and enhance your career prospects. The objectives of this course include:

  • Tailoring PRINCE2 to suit different projects.
  • Identifying the PRINCE2 terminologies.
  • Applying PRINCE2 to real situations.
  • Preparing for and sitting the PRINCE2 Practitioner certificate examination.

Conclusion

In conclusion, PRINCE2 course is ideal for people in modern and technologically driven society who deal with project management. It allows you to prove to employers, particularly the government, that you fully understand all aspects of this great project management method.

So if you want to be ahead of your peers when applying for government jobs this is a good starting point.

References:

http://www.doh.gov.uk
http://www.prince-officialsite.com/
http://www.alctraining.com.au/introduction-programme-and-portfolio-management/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PRINCE2

Photo Credit: Flickr/Quinn Dombrowski

About the Author
Chris Pentago

Chris is experienced web developer/designer and computer geek interested in key technologies to make your online business perform. During his career he worked for some of the biggest Australian brands. Currently experimenting with all sorts of Unix-like operating systems and Ninefold virtual machines.